Edition, July 9, 2003, Page 1
CULP JOINS CSV
Ron Culp, who headed Sears,
Roebuck's PR department for a decade, is opening a Citigate
Sard Verbinnen office in Chicago. "It wasn't in my
summertime plans, but the opportunity was too good to pass
up," he told this NL.
The 55-year-old exec resigned
from Sears as senior VP of PR/government affairs in February.
Culp, who is managing director at the financial communications
firm, also served as executive director-corporate relations
at Sara Lee, PR director for Pitney Bowes and corporate
relations chief at Eli Lilly.
George Sard, who worked
with Culp while at Sears, called him a "major talent"
and the "right person" to lead CSV's first office
outside New York.
Judy Brennan, CSV principal,
and Kara Findlay, senior associate, are relocating from
New York to join Culp in Chicago. Culp said they will be
in position by Labor Day. CSV is moving into the office
of the former Citigate Communications office in Chicago.
Citigate is part of Incepta.
BANTA HEADS TO SCHERING-PLOUGH
Ken Banta, VP of strategic communications for Pharmacia
Corp., has moved to Schering-Plough in a similar role amid
a "turnaround program" to revitalize the pharmaceutical
company. S-P said July 7 its earnings would be well below
Wall Street's expectations because of competition from generic
alternatives to two of its flagship drugs.
Banta, who was previously a senior PA exec for Burson-Marsteller,
is charged with working closely with the company's executive
management team, including CEO Fred Hassan, on internal
and external communications efforts. The post is a new one
at S-P, according to Bob Consalvo, director of communications
at S-P. He told this NL Banta will work outside of the company's
corporate comms. department.
Hassan has made several moves recently within the company
as part of his "Action Agenda" plan to turn around
the drug maker. S-P, which had $10.2 billion in sales last
year, said it took a significant profit hit in the first
quarter when its Claritin allergy drug was introduced over-the-counter
54, president of Golin/Harris Int'l, has succeeded Rich
Jernstedt, 56, as CEO. Cook assumed the No. 2 spot
in September. Jernstedt is now chairman. Al
Golin, 74, who had that post, becomes "founder."
He will continue to counsel clients.
AC ROLLS DICE WITH WS
The Atlantic City Convention & Visitors Authority has
hired Weber Shandwick to forge a hip image for the Jersey
town that is celebrating its 25th year of legalized gambling,
Susan Ricciardi told this NL. The account is worth $500K.
She said AC wants to be perceived as more than a getaway
for older adults. The Authority considered a number of firms,
but liked WS because of its "integrated marketing approach
and its Hollywood connections," she said. "We
want to get Atlantic City placed in the movies."
Ricciardi spoke following a marketing meeting with Rene
Mack, who heads WS' travel group. She praised Mack for his
ability to arrange tie-ins, such as the one he arranged
for Hilton Head Island with Chrysler.
She said the first order of business for WS is to junk
AC's slogan, "America's Favorite Playground."
New Jersey-based MWW Group, an Interpublic sister company
to WS, also will work on the account. Smith O'Keefe, in
AC, will handle community rels.
BLANC STEPS DOWN AT H&K
Maureen Blanc has stepped down as head of Hill & Knowlton's
high-tech practice after a four-year run at the WPP Group
unit. She left to pursue personal goals and to spend more
time with her family. Blanc departed H&K with a "heavy
heart, but a very fulfilled one," and will do consulting
She founded Blanc & Otus, which H&K acquired in
1999, with Simone Otus in 1983. Blanc joined H&K's worldwide
executive committee in June, 2001. Otus left H&K last
Joe Paluska is deputy dir., H&K/U.S. technology.
BOARD NOT HAPPY WITH BYRUM/NIKE
close to the board of PR Society of America say "many"
of the 17 board members are "furious" with the
statements made by president Reed Byrum in the wake of the
Supreme Court decision June 26 sending the Nike vs. Kasky
case back to the California Supreme Court.
board did not get to see or approve the lengthy remarks
made by Byrum, said the sources.
June 26 release was sent out with Libby Roberge, PR director
of PRSA, as the contact.
said the Supreme Court's "failure to address questions
of established protections for free speech by corporations
and other institutions demonstrated
(continued on page 7)
Edition, July 9, 2003, Page 2
D.C. CHURCH HIT
WITH BOGUS LOBBY FILING
Group registered June 3 under the Lobbying Disclosure Act
as lobbyist for The Archdiocese of Washington for "investigations
into the Catholic Church" and federal school vouchers.
to Susan Gibbs, in the Archdiocese's Office of Communications.
She told this NL the Church does not use any outside lobbyist.
She contacted the LDA office to get "deregistered."
the staffer told her it's the first time he has ever heard
of any client challenging a filing.
C.L.A CEO Laurence Socci was one of many people to attend
a lobbying day sponsored by the Church. Socci posted a letter
in the "testimonial" section of C.L.A.'s website
from Michael Scott, in the Archdiocese's Office of Social
Concerns, thanking him for participating in "Catholic
Advocacy Day." Gibbs said everybody who attended CAD
got a thank-you note.
lists the "Archdiocesan Legislative Network of D.C."
among clients that it has represented since 1998. The Archdiocese,
according to Gibbs, has about 4,500 volunteers in that network.
Socci may have been a volunteer, she added, but that hardly
makes his firm a lobbyist for the Archdiocese.
he was unaware of the federal filing until he was contacted
by this NL. "When you contacted me regarding the filing
of a Lobby Registration for the Archdiocese, I was surprised
because we did not make any such filing," he said.
"After doing our own internal investigation, it appears
that the filing was made by a recently fired, disgruntled
employee who probably hoped to accomplish what it seems
he personally volunteered with the Archdiocese, but not
in the capacity of a lobbying firm. "We are in the
process of removing those reports from the public record,"
he said, and "in the process of removing the reference
to the Archdiocese and Michael Scott from our Client List
section as well. I apologize for any confusion."
GRUBMAN TO TEACH PR
New York publicity princess Lizzie Grubman is slated to
teach a three-hour class on "How to Succeed in PR and
Image Marketing" Aug. 5 in New York at The Learning
Annex ($50 fee).
The school is billing Grubman's appearance as an expert,
in-depth look at what it takes to launch and maintain a
successful PR career. That includes "the essential
skills and qualities of a top PR person, and attention-getting
ways to present yourself in writing and in person,"
among other topics.
Grubman also joined New York radio station "Blink
102.7" as its gossip and entertainment reporter. She
filed her first report from the Hamptons during the July
4 weekend. That dispatch came nearly two years after Grubman
plowed her SUV into a crowd outside the Conscience Point
Inn. She served 37 days in jail after pleading guilty to
assault and leaving the scene of a crime.
COS. SHOULD SPREAD OWN PROPAGANDA
Companies should develop their own public diplomacy units
when operating in areas of the world where the U.S. isn't
liked, said Jack Leslie, chairman of Weber Shandwick, at
a June 25 United Nations forum that dealt with the rise
He noted that many of the Fortune 100 companies
have revenues that are bigger than the economies of some
countries that they operate in, yet they don't get involved
in local politics.
Companies, in Leslie's view, should have positions on labor
rights, sanitation, human rights, trade, corruption, environmental
policies and intellectual property issues. "They should
develop 'mini-state departments,'" he said.
He said companies "must be prepared to understand
the dynamics and causes of anti-Americanism and to develop
initiatives of their own that brand them as independent
of U.S. government policies."
Leslie believes anti-Americanism was on the rise prior
to 9/11, and called Iraq the "tipping point."
"Once there was resistance to what America did; today,
resentment is growing for what America is," said the
PR exec. "Nobody can predict with certainty whether
these attitudes will subside or continue."
Leslie said America's public diplomacy effort was "wiped
out" after the Cold War was won.
America's image in the Middle East won't improve until
the Palestinian/Israeli situation is settled, he said. Leslie,
who noted that he detests the word "spin," said
the U.S. "can't spin its way to a solution in the Middle
East because reality is dominant."
MS&L SHUFFLES RANKS,
Publicis Groupe's Manning, Selvage & Lee has promoted
several top executives in New York and is planning an August
move from its longtime headquarters at 79 Madison ave.
Michael Marino, managing director of the New York office
and EVP of creative and strategic development, has been
named chief strategic officer, a new position. Wendy Lund,
director of MS&L's New York healthcare unit, was named
GM of the New York office, and Don Hannaford is now MD of
Washington, D.C., as part of what chairman/CEO Lou Capozzi
said is a plan to manage the firm primarily by region.
Jill Farwell, Joe Gleason and Mark Hass have been named
presidents, North America, and Juergen Togotzes is president,
Europe, Middle East and Africa.
Farwell takes the reins of the firm's Los Angeles, San
Francisco and Atlanta offices; D.C., New York, Boston and
Toronto report to Gleason (head of the firm's global practice),
and Hass (CEO of Hass MS&L) now oversees Detroit, Chicago
and Ann Arbor.
The firm is expected to move its headquarters to the ninth
and tenth floors of 1675 Broadway (between 52nd and 53rd
sts.), where other Publicis firms have offices. Publicis
acquired MS&L with its purchase of Bcom3 Group last
Edition, July 9, 2003, Page 3
REPORT RAPS 'CHEERLEADING'
assistant professor at the Univ. of Minnesota's School of
Journalism and Mass Communications, said the media performed
"a disservice to the public" in its coverage of
an experimental new drug for curing the common cold.
pleconaril, was in clinical trials from 1997 to 2002. ViroPharma
Inc., the Pennsylvania biotechnology company that manufactures
the drug, submitted data to the Food and Drug Administration
in March 2002, requesting approval to market the drug for
common colds in adults.
The FDA advisory committee unanimously rejected the manufacturer's
application, and five months later ViroPharma ended trials.
is difficult to understand is why and how so many journalists
became cheerleaders for an investigational drug that, in
the end, failed to pass the test of clinical trials,"
Schwitzer said in his report.
completing the trials-didn't seem to matter in many news
stories," said Schwitzer. "It fell far short of
what any rational person would call a cure. Yet hundreds
of journalists called pleconaril just that and more, in
hundreds of news stories before the drug was ever submitted
to the FDA for approval," he said.
of four databases (Lexis-Nexis, Factiva.com, PR Newswire,
and Vanderbilt Univ. TV News Archives) showed that from
1997 to 2002 there were 982 stories on pleconaril in U.S.
newspapers and TV newscasts.
About a third
of the stories used sensational terms in describing pleconaril
or made bold predictions about how and when the drug would
be approved by the FDA and on the market.
2000 The Associated Press quoted a ViroPharma-funded investigator
as saying, "This IS the cure for the common cold."
The story, which was the impetus for at least two dozen
stories across the country, sent ViroPharma's stock soaring,
anchorman for "NBC Nightly News," said the drug
"could eventually be a giant leap for mankind."
The next day then-ABC anchorman Aaron Brown said, "A
cure for the common cold and a whole lot more could be coming...The
drug is called pleconaril and could be available within
a year." Fifty-two local TV stations followed with
In Dec. 2001,
Schwitzer said CNN Headline News ran 23 stories on pleconaril
in 24 hours. That month, ABC's "Good Morning America"
reported "a breakthrough in the search for the cure
for the common cold."
The AP reported
on April 9, 2003 that a federal judge had authorized a class
action lawsuit that accuses ViroPharma of misleading investors
into believing its drug would be approved by the FDA.
EDITOR GETS D.C. JOB
previously managing editor of The Miami Herald, was
named managing editor/international at the Washington, D.C.,
bureau of Knight Ridder. He will oversee foreign and national
security coverage for the company's 32 newspapers, starting
directed the Herald's coverage of Iran-Contra, which won
a Pulitzer Prize in 1987.
DOOCEY NAMED ED. OF CASINO
was named editor of Casino Journal, a new "how-to"
magazine for casino executives that will be published by
the Ascend Media Gaming Group, based in Las Vegas.
previously an associate editor, was promoted to managing
editor of Casino Journal, which will focus on people, products
been editor-in-chief of Bank Systems and Technology
magazine, and he spent eight years as a writer and editor
of International Gaming and Wagering Business, which
is Ascend's flagship publication. IGWB will continue to
cover trends in the gaming industry.
ABY-AZAR IS M.E. AT WSJ AMERICAS
Cristina Aby-Azar was promoted to managing editor of "The
Wall Street Journal Americas," an international business
news section published in New York by Dow Jones & Co.
for distribution by newspapers throughout Latin America.
Aby-Azar, formerly deputy managing editor of the Journal
Americas, succeeds Edward Schumacher, who is leaving to
become CEO and editorial director of Meximerica Media, a
new company with plans to publish Spanish-language daily
newspapers in Texas and elsewhere.
Aby-Azar, who joined Journal Americas in 1997, will oversee
news operations for the branded pages, which appear in 18
newspapers in 16 countries with total circulation of 1.7
SELECCIONES APPOINTS NEW
Reader's Digest Selecciones magazine named Genevieve
Marlin-Fernandez as managing editor. She was at People
en Espanol as deputy managing editor, overseeing bureaus
in the U.S. and Latin America, and securing interviews with
Selecciones is published in different editions for readers
in 20 Spanish-speaking markets.
one of Fortune's three assistant managing editors,
is leaving to join The New York Times as its Sunday
business section editor.
48, previously an editor at Brill's Content, has
joined The Week magazine as managing editor.
news continued on next page)
Edition, July 9, 2003, Page 4
PR FIRM LOSES TRADEMARK LAWSUIT
A U.S. District Judge has ruled Entrepreneur PR founder
Scott Smith infringed upon the trademark of Entrepreneur
Magazine, which is published monthly by Entrepreneur
The judge held Smith, whose PR firm is located in Sacramento,
Calif., earned $544,998 in profit by confusing clients about
his company's relationship with Entrepreneur Magazine.
Smith also published a magazine, called Entrepreneur
Illustrated and called his website, entrepreneur PR.com.
"Many witnesses whom the court found to be very credible,
testified that they believed, when they were solicited by
Smith, that defendant was associated with Entrepreneur Media
or Entrepreneur Magazine," Judge Florence-Marie Cooper
"Smith denied the allegations of all of those witnesses.
His testimony in that, and many other respects, was not
credible," the judge said.
Entrepreneur Magazine was started 25 years ago. The magazine
has a circulation of 550,000 and its website gets about
two million hits per month.
Smith, 40, started his PR business in 1996.
Judge Cooper ordered Smith to pay Entrepreneur Media $669,656
in damages and interest, plus legal costs, which have not
The Sacramento Bee said the chatter in the small
business community is that Entrepreneur Media is setting
a bad precedent, and some find it ironic that a company
touting itself as a friend of entreprenuers is suing an
LE FIGARO EDITOR UNDER INVESTIGATION
Jean de Belot, editor of Le Figaro, which is France's
second largest national daily newspaper, is being investigated
for alleged insider trading.
When he was business editor of Le Figaro in 1999, de Belot
is suspected by judicial officials of buying up shares of
the Promodes supermarket chain after learning confidential
information about a coming merger with Carrefour, a rival
De Belot, who offered to resign in 2000, made about $4,479
from the transaction, according to The Financial Times.
OPC HELPS FREE IMPRISONED
The Indonesian government released imprisoned writer William
Nessen on June 24 after The Overseas Press Club of America
confirmed he was a member and a freelance writer, according
to Norman Schorr, a spokesman for OPC.
Schorr said the Indonesian government had suggested Nessen,
46, was "a tourist who has no business being there"
and might be a spy.
Nessen said he had attempted to surrender June 10, but
a photographer with him was shot and killed by Indonesian
forces, despite the fact he had his hands in the air.
'WHITE-HAIRED FLACK' ADVISES
The "White-Haired Flack" has resurfaced, offering
free crisis counselling to Arthur Sulzberger Jr., publisher
of The New York Times.
The anonymous individual, who had also advised the recently
resigned executive editor Howell Raines, sent his first
memo to Sulzberger on June 19. "I'm not sure if Howell
shared with you my scribblings from before, during and after
the fire," the memo began, "but that's all ancient
history now. Howell took the heat, but now he's fishing,
and the backlash is already getting friendlier. His ego
will smart for a while, but he gets to move on to the next
thing," said the memo to Sulzberger, which was reprinted
The memo writer urges Sulzberger to "see this situation
first and foremost as a business issue, viewing the facts
as any good CEO would.
"The consumer never even had a problem with it [the
Jayson Blair scandal], just your workforce," said the
writer of the memo, who offers the publisher 10 suggestions
for leading the Times out of crisis.
The writer said Sulzberger's top priorities should be to
"adjust your mindset to the long game," affirm
the calm, and stick to the plan.
"You put yourself in a bad position by instructing
Catherine [Mathis, NYT's head of corporate communications]
to tell reporters that you would have a new executive editor
hired in `weeks, not months,'" the memo writer said.
"You'll probably make it happen, but you never want
to set such a tight clock for yourself. Always establish
the time expectations beyond what you need, and then surprise
people by moving ahead of schedule," the writer said.
Some of the writer's other suggestions to Sulzberger were
to include broadening the paper's appeal "beyond the
Upper East Side and the nation's NPR listeners, without
sacrificing the smartness of the brand"; making sure
that every journalist knows that "working for the world's
best newspaper is not a God-given right, but a state they
have to create each day with their own work," and to
"tolerate none of the trash talk that did Howell in.
In other words, act like a real leader."
The Food Network,
which produces "Emeril Live!," is building a TV
studio and office at Chelsea Market in New York, which also
houses New York 1 News and Oxygen Media.
is ranked number one in the current events and global
news sub-category for May 2003, according to the latest
audience data released by Nielsen.Net Ratings.
MSNBC beat out all other online news sites including CNN,
Yahoo! News, AOL News, NYTimes.com,
ABC News, Fox News, MSN Slate and CBS News.
Edition, July 9, 2003, Page 7
BOARD NOT HAPPY WITH BYRUM
(continued from page 1)
the high court is out of touch with realities of complex
communications in a global society."
headline on the release said, "PRSA 'Devastated' that
Supreme Court Fails to Clarify 'Free Speech' in Nike Case."
Sources said the board felt the use of the word "devastated"
was "inappropriate" and "overstated"
the importance of the Supreme Court's decision, which merely
sent the case back to California.
PRSA staff and Byrum had many weeks to prepare different
statements for what the Supreme Court might do, said the
sources, and there was no need for such an emotion-charged
members, according to the sources, did not get a chance
to approve what was sent out nationwide and feel it has
embarrassed the Society.
feel PRSA has "insulted" the high court by accusing
it of "ignorance" and "naivete," according
to sources familiar with the board.
has been accused of improper labor practices at plants in
the Far East that make its products.
It commissioned a study that attacked the reports and Californian
Marc Kasky sued Nike on charges of false advertising and
PR. Nike is claiming that its statements were non-commercial
and other commercial speech are held to a higher standard
than comments by private citizens.
PRSA MEMBER BLASTS APR
Stuart Z. Goldstein, managing
director of corporate communications, Depository Trust &
Clearing Corp., New York, the largest securities depository,
said PRSA's accreditation program "has no relevance
to the real world."
Goldstein made the remark
in a letter published in the July Tactics, the monthly
Calling for an "end
to the emphasis on testing," Goldstein said "the
idea of Accreditation, if it ever had any relevance, has
been supplanted by high-quality university undergraduate
and graduate programs that teach the basics of tactical
He said such programs
"provide all the credentials required, absent real
work product, to show professional expertise."
The national board wants
APR to be separated from Assembly membership while keeping
it for board membership. Only 21% of PRSA members are APR.
Can't Accredit Self
Goldstein said the APR
program puts PRSA members in the position of accrediting
The PR executive, who
is not APR, said that in 25 years in the business world
he has never heard anyone ask whether a job applicant was
He calls on PRSA to be
an agent of change and to keep up with modern business practices.
He also said "the
emphasis on awards programs should give way to research
and authorship on issues, trends and innovation at the quality
level of a Harvard or MIT business review." He wants
to see different views expressed on PR's role.
TEXT 100 FENDS OFF MUSIC INDUS.
Text 100 is mounting a
PR defense for StreamCast Networks, makers of the number
three file-swapping program Morpheus and the target of legal
challenges from the music industry.
The Recording Industry
Assn. of America is collecting evidence to sue 'Net users
who download and swap music files with programs like Morpheus
or KaZaA. It has been running full-page ads nation ally,
which warn file sharers of its intent to prosecute.
"We do not condone
copyright infringement," said StreamCast CEO Michael
Weiss, in a statement distributed by Text 100. "But
we will not sit idly by and watch the recording industry
trample on the rights and privacy of individuals."
NGOs ARE ETHICAL LEADERS
once thought of as "counter-powers" and special
interest lobbyists, are now ethical leaders, "agenda
setters," and "information gatekeepers,"
a Sorbonne professor told the World PR Festival in Rome
Activist groups are now widely considered as representing
the public interest and common good rather than being narrowly
focused lobbyists, said professor Jean-Pierre Beaudoin,
who is managing director, Information et Enterprise, Paris.
There has been a "major shift" in attitude toward
them, he said.
Such groups are no longer
a counter-power but a power in themselves, he added.
The PR Festival was largely
arranged by Toni Muzi Falconi, president of the Global Alliance
and FERPI (Italian PR group). Festival host was Pietro Gnudi,
chairman of ENEL Spa.
Unethical Behavior is Costly
David Drobis, chairman
of Ketchum, spoke of the huge costs of unethical behavior,
mentioning Enron and Arthur Andersen. Consumers have lost
respect for organizations and the financial world, he said.
Good corporate governance
is not a cost of doing business but an investment that boosts
employee productivity and helps win a fair price for the
company's stock, he said. PR pros should help their companies
to develop an ethical, accountable and consistent corporate
culture, according to Drobis.
INDIES SET UP LUMIN
Five independent firms
have invested in a think tank-like project to come up with
new PR tactics and pitch new business. Carter Ryley Thomas,
Paine PR, Patrice Tanaka & Co., Peppercom, and Padilla
Speer Beardsley, which combined billed $30 million last
year, are calling the joint venture, Lumin, an R&D shop
Top executives of the
firms told this NL each firm will remain independent but
will collaborate on everything from accounts and staff training
sessions to where they buy healthcare coverage.
The firms brought in Darryl
Salerno, former CEO of Magnet Comms., to be executive director
of Lumin, which they bill as an "intellectual collaborative."
Edition, July 9, 2003, Page 8
rebuke that directors of PRSA have given president Reed
Byrum is unprecedented in the Society's 55-year history.
If any directors
support his comments that the Supreme Court, in sending
Nike/Kasky back to California, showed "ignorance,"
"naivete," and "indecision," or that
PRSA is "devastated" by the decision, we would
like to hear from them.
know board members say the press release is part of a pattern
in which Byrum and a few others make big decisions without
consulting the full board. Their frustration has now burst
June 26 release puts a spotlight on the PR ineptitude at
h.q., which is costly not only to PRSA, but the entire
were a group of senior PR pros there, which we have long
advised and which there are not, this release would never
have been distributed.
the release was PR director Libby Roberge, who has been
in PR 16 years.
her a middle manager, at best. Her assistant, who now takes
over her duties (since Roberge is going on three months'
maternity leave), is Cedric Bess, a 1999 graduate of Florida
Int'l Univ. He was president of PRSSA in 2000-2001.
one other PR pro among 48 staffers is Catherine Bolton,
who, in the week of a major PRSA crisis, was on vacation
at her home in Pennsylvania. Having failed to stop this
over-the-top release, she should have been arranging an
Bolton, 51, has had a meteoric career at PRSA. She joined
Sept. 5, 2000 as "chief PR officer," replacing
PR director Richard George, who suddenly quit a year earlier
just before the 1999 national conference.
she headed a one-person PR dept. at the Int'l Copper Assn.
and before that was with Akzo Nobel, Netherlands chemical
firm; WNET-TV; Princess Grace Foundation; Six Flags Corp.,
and in executive sales at Dow Jones.
job lasted about two months because COO Ray Gaulke was suddenly
shifted to the PRSA Foundation (with four years still to
go on his contract). Bolton became executive director, acting
president/COO on Jan. 1, 2001, and president on Feb. 7,
2001. Chair Kathy Lewton said she had the "ideal career
profile: senior-level experience in PR and a wealth of association
paid $283K that year including $58K in bonuses. Her 2002
pay included a $236K base, a bonus of $28K, and a pension
of $20K. The bonuses, PRSA has said, are not related to
any growth in membership, which has been level in the 19,000's
for six years. PRSA, taking its sweet time, hired Roberge
eight months later-August 2001.
decision that did not get full board review was the June
23 hiring of Robert Levy not only as "chief
professional development officer" but as No. 2 "senior
executive" at PRSA who will head the staff when Bolton
is out of town.
she will travel more often, visiting chapters.
feel that should be done by them while Bolton handles her
well-paid COO duties.
no visible background in PR. Previously, he spent 15 years
at Kaplan Educational Centers, New York, rising to executive
director of E-Learning. He left in 1999 and had jobs at
McGraw-Hill Lifetime Learning, Westlake Internet Training,
and Columbia Graduate School of Business before becoming
a consultant in January, 2002.
the senior PR pros who are unemployed these days, including
members of PRSA, we think one of those should have been
hired. A senior PR pro would have blocked the Byrum release.
what is "PR professional development" these days
when more than 25,000 PR pros work in 51 PR units
owned by $$-minded ad conglomerates?
are shorter than ever. Favored are young, cheap, docile,
replaceable PR aides who will push clients into using advertising
whenever possible. The recruits are not allowed to build
their own roster of press contacts.
no expense accounts. Many will soon be freelancers or just
leave the field. PRSA's new outside CPA, Sobel & Co.,
has characterized PRSA's membership as "transient."
It "turns over" about every 4-5 years (11,042
members left in the years 2001-2002).
wonder if someone will explain to Levy the state of "press
relations" these days and why PRSA gives it
such short shrift? Why did the press-avoiding officers of
Omnicom, which owns PR firms doing $750M+ in business, flee
to Los Angeles to hold a five-minute annual meeting May
20? What kind of example is that to PR people?
told Levy how difficult it will be dealing with the fundamentalist
APRs, who have created 4,098 new APRs since 1985 at a cost
of $2.9 million but have watched 2,700 existing APRs walk
out the door?.
conventional PR wisdom appears to be avoid tangling
with the press and the ensuing public dissection of an organization's
problems by various experts. But what job, then, is left
think PRSA's directors are also getting ticked off
at all the hours they put in on e-mails, phone calls, four
weekends lost to board meetings, etc., all for no $$ (not
even enough to meet expenses), while the average pay/benefits
for the 48 PRSA staffers is $82,224 (not to mention expenses).
Payroll costs were $3.94M or 42% of total income in 2002.
-- Jack O'Dwyer